The Grand Palace was where the former king used to reside. Although today the current king of Thailand doesn’t live there, it still hosts a number of Royal functions. It’s a hotspot for locals and foreigners alike. Amongst the bustling crowds of tourists, monks mill around clad in saffron coloured robes and go about their Buddhist duties.
Enshrined within the heart of Wat Phra Kaeo lies the Emerald Buddha, the main focal point of the Grand Palace. Despite its name, the Emerald Buddha is actually made of solid jade. Shoes must be removed on entry, which is standard practise in all temples across Thailand. The decadent display within is enchantingly stunning; the Emerald Buddha sits amongst a collection of grand gilt figures. I couldn’t get photos of the Emerald Buddha as is considered to be so sacred that taking photos within the Wat Phara Kaeo is prohibited. To get a glimpse of this sacred relic, you must go and see it for yourself.
There’s a a strict dress code in place so it’s advisable to dress modestly if you are planning on visiting the Grand Palace. Keep shoulders and legs out of sight and avoid open footwear. It’s best to be safe than sorry and as this is a sacred site for Thailand’s Buddhist population, adequate respect should always be shown by all who are visiting. There’s a service at the entrance that hires out long skirts for a 200 baht (around £4) deposit for those showing too much leg. I’m wearing one in the picture above and I think they are quite nice!
The Grand Palace is located in the heart of Bangkok and I highly recommend paying it a visit if you are in the city. I would suggest reserving a couple of hours to explore the palace’s complex as there is so much to see. The entrance fee is 500 baht (around £10) which is considerably more expensive than other temples in Bangkok but in my opinion it’s absolutely worth it. For more information click HERE.